Hooverphonic Jackie Cane

The Belgian trio of Geike Arnaert, Raymond Geerts and Alex Callier have returned with a pop concept album of sorts, namely a thematic tribute to the late pop singer Jackie Cane. Musically, this is a huge-sounding album that benefits from the use of a full orchestra, including the omnipresent British brass section the Kick Horns. The album is bright, dreamy and sounds as if it were a soundtrack to a Connery-era Bond flick. Having now reached their fourth full-length release, Hooverphonic have fine-tuned their beat-laden pop style and they sound perfectly compatible with their vastly expanded instrumentation. Although the album’s 13 tracks are predominantly grandiose pop torch songs, there are quieter moments, like "Nirvana Blue” or "Sad Song.” For the most part though, the album uses the big, layered sound to tell Jackie Cane’s story of fame and her ultimate demise from its pressures. Although not a groundbreaking album stylistically, this is a solid and catchy collection of pop songs with an interesting topical twist. (Sony)